But there were a few more items that – while not essential – are well-loved by me, and I wanted to make sure they got on your radar! Here goes:
Whisks: I reach for my whisks, time and time again – I have a few sizes, for various baking and cooking needs. The bigger size is perfect for blending large quantities of liquid ingredients – especially when I’m doubling up recipes for a holiday baking marathon. And the smaller one is handy for emulsifying dressing ingredients or breaking up one or two eggs.
Metal shakers: You can read more about these in last year’s post about holiday baking. Clearly, I adore my shakers.
Custard cups: I must have at least a dozen of these, and use them every single day. They are perfect for so many things – staging batches of colored icing, sprinkles and chopped nuts. Holding small quantities of ingredients like zests and spices. Melting a tablespoon or two of butter. The list goes on and on.
Buttermilk blend: Does anyone actually keep buttermilk in their fridge? I don’t, yet it never fails – whenever I decide to spontaneously bake something, the recipe invariably calls for buttermilk. Buttermilk blend keeps much longer than buttermilk, and works beautifully in most recipes.
Silpat: yes I love my parchment paper. But there are times where I need something more heavy duty. Like when making fruit pies, which always bubble up and overflow. Or batches of spiced nuts, which have to be stirred frequently. Or brittles, which must be spread quickly once they are poured onto the baking sheet. Nothing – I mean nothing – sticks to these.
Non-stick cooking spray (such as Pam): I wouldn’t think of baking a cake or a batch of brownies without spraying my pan first (my post on how to prepare a cake pan goes into more detail). But I also spray the inside of a measuring cup that will hold a sticky liquid like honey or corn syrup – it literally pours right out (LOVE this tip). I also liberally spray all pots, pans and utensils when making batches of brittle or marshmallows.
Whew! Okay. I think I’m done. Did I forget anything?